Wednesday, August 28, 2013


We cannot leave August without talking tomatoes. This is their high season, and we all know the benefits of eating local! The tomatoes in my garden happen to be prolific and delicious this year. I have been drying them, freezing them whole, making ratatouille, and now pasta sauce to enjoy and freeze for later.

When highlighting tomatoes in August simplicity is the key. They have such a beautiful flavor that not much else is needed.
 A few tomato facts:
Tomatoes, are actually a fruit!
Interestingly, cooked tomatoes are more nutritious than fresh!
Their nutrients are fat soluble so a little oil helps your body to absorb the nutrients better!
The phytochemical lycopene makes the tomato heart healthy and protects from some forms of cancer!

MY FAVORITE "GRAVY" (as my father-in-law would say)

1/4 C good olive oil
1 white onion chopped
4-6 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
8 cups of chopped tomatoes (I mix different types)
1/4 c fresh basil chopped
1/8th c fresh oregano chopped
*1/4 c red wine, optional
1/2 t sea, or himalayan salt ( these provide beneficial minerals with no added chemicals)
black pepper, or red pepper flakes to taste
In a large deep saute pan with a lid,
add oil, and onion and saute for 3-4 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook a few minutes more.
Add the tomatoes, and wine if using, and simmer all of the above at least 25 minutes, more is fine.
I start with the cover on the pan then I take it off to allow the sauce to cook down and thicken slightly.
Add the herbs, salt and pepper to taste and simmer for 10 minutes more.

Serve over your favorite whole wheat or rice pasta.

Double this recipe, and cool and freeze for a taste of sumer this winter!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013



 This is a recipe that my husband and I have been making all summer! It is very versatile.
We have used it as a dip with corn chips, on wraps, and on grilled wild salmon!
One of the key ingredients is the red onion which was featured in my previous blog.


1 medium red onion diced very small
1 sweet red pepper diced very small
1 green pepper diced very small
2 cups of fresh pineapple, or mango, or to keep it local, peaches or nectarines, very finely chopped
1 cup of finely chopped cilantro
hot jalapenos diced, I used 4-6 slices from a jar diced small. Add more to taste.
juice of one lime.
*optional, we sometimes like to add a can of no salt black beans and/or some corn off the cob if you have leftovers.

mix all ingredients in a bowl and allow to sit for several hours or overnight before serving to blend the flavors. Taste and adjust heat as desired.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


The onion family as a whole adds many beneficial nutrients to your diet.
The red onion has twice as many anti-oxidents as any other type of onion!

The sulfur in the red onion is important for the role it plays in detoxification, inhibition of red blood cell clumping, and the lowering of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Sulfur improves cell membrane function, cardiac function and fat metabolism.

Red onions are also a rich source of quercetin a naturally occurring  anti-histimine,  often recommended for allergies and asthma. In the natural state of the whole onion it is more bioavailable to the body than in supplement form.

Red onions are a great source of chromium, which most people do not get enough of. Chromium lowers blood sugar, and supports heart health.

A few tips on using onions. When chopping and onion always use as much of the outer layers as possible.(Just removing the papery skin) Also let onions sit for 10-15 minutes before using as this allows the best use of the nutrients. When heated the red onion looses some of it's anthocyanins, but not the quercetin!

Studies show that 4-7 servings of red onions a week have been associated with reducing colorectal, oral, laryngeal, esophageal, and ovarian cancer.

Watch for my next blog in which I will share my favorite red onion recipe.
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